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Uganda protest over new social media tax turns violent

KAMPALA, Uganda — Ugandan police have used tear gas and bullets to break up a protest against a new tax targeting social media users.

Police spokesman Luke Owoyesigire says two protesters have been arrested in downtown Kampala, the capital, after a scuffle in which some policemen were assaulted. The protest was organized by a popular lawmaker.

Since July 1, social media users have been paying upfront a daily tax of 200 shillings (5 cents) to access social media websites. That’s in addition to the usual data fees.

The tax was first proposed by longtime President Yoweri Museveni, who complained about online gossip in a March letter that urged the finance minister to raise money “to cope with the consequences.”

Museveni has ruled Uganda since 1986.

Associated Press, The Associated Press

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